Rotten Core of Britain’s Establishment: Baroness Mone’s Deception and Entitlement
Cast aside the dewy-eyed denials – Ex-Tory crony Baroness Mone has now squealed on herself over wallowing in pandemic profits. The peer has confessed to lying about her snout being firmly in the trough alongside husband Doug Barrowman’s to the tune of £60 million.
This comes as the National Crime Agency probes the fat cat couple for alleged fraud in relation to lucrative government PPE contracts. Documents suggest they extracted obscene wealth via offshore trusts as dodgy protective equipment went unused.
Yet this is not merely a tale of elite avarice. Cast a beady eye across Westminster and this greedy episode fits a broader pattern. As fraud drained billions from the public purse during COVID, policies which should protect communities instead fed a bonanza for the Boris brigade.
After being ennobled by former Prime Minister David Cameron. Baroness Michelle Mone was unveiled as the Tory government’s new tsar with a remit to encourage business startups in disadvantaged areas, however, it looks like she took full advantage in every area.
Snuffling For Riches At The Taxpayers’ Expense
As businesses sunk and families struggled, emergency schemes became easy pickings for the politically plugged-in. A conservative estimate of over £21 billion lost to fraud – eye-watering embezzlement greasing the wheels of the old pals act running through SW1.
PPE Medpro is the most vivid snapshot of this Westminster wheeze. Mone’s lips initially buttoned over her profiting personnel but the texts and trails led relentlessly to her sty. £203 million was shovelled the company’s way and – lo and behold – tens of millions subsequently sloshed offshore into the estimable Baroness’s bank account.
PPE Medpro was awarded deals worth £203 million for gowns and masks in 2020, reportedly making around £60 million profit. Leaked documents revealed Tory donor Barrowman received at least £65 million, with £29 million transferred to an offshore trust benefiting Lady Mone and her children.
In a film uploaded to YouTube last week, paid for by PPE Medpro, which featured the first public interviews by Mone and her husband, Doug Barrowman, since the NCA began its investigation, the film’s presenter, Mark Williams-Thomas, said the couple were facing criminal allegations of conspiracy to defraud, fraud by false representation, and bribery. Of course in a film they commissioned themselves, they both deny wrongdoing.
In a BBC Laura Kuenssberg interview, Mone, who was appointed to the House of Lords by Dodgy David Cameron in 2015, another Tory snout deep in sleaze and corruption, admitted that she and Barrowman, through their lawyers, repeatedly falsely denied they had any connection to PPE Medpro.
With an NCA investigation ongoing and possible House of Lords action pending, Lady Mone’s reputational damage limitation exercise has come very late. The self-styled entrepreneur may come to regret the misleading statements she claims were intended to protect her family.
From Referral To Offshore Transfer – The Sleazy Cycle
In their BBC interview, Barrowman acknowledged for the first time publicly that the company had made a profit on that scale, and that he had transferred money to the Keristal Trust.
“Medpro made a return on its investment of about, realistically, about 30% [approximately £61m],” he said.
The couple acknowledged that Barrowman had transferred money into the Keristal trust, and in the interview, Mone referred to the figure of £29m.
Barrowman said: “I’m an Isle of Man resident. The money comes to the Isle of Man because that’s fundamentally where I live. It goes on my tax return, and like all my sources of income that I’ve generated over many years, it goes into trust for the benefit of my family.”
Kuenssberg asked if any of the profits were used to buy a yacht – Barrowman bought a yacht in May 2021, for £6m, which was renamed Lady M. In August 2021, Mone posted on Instagram a picture of herself and Barrowman on the yacht, with the words: “Business isn’t easy. But it is rewarding.”
Barrowman said the PPE Medpro profits were not used to buy the yacht. Mone said: “It’s not my yacht. It’s not my money. I don’t have that money and my kids don’t have that money, and my children and family have gone through so much pain because of the media. They have not got £29m.”
Kuenssberg referred to “half the profit” going to the Keristal trust. Mone and Barrowman confirmed that it was a trust for her and her children, and said his children were beneficiaries too. It is not clear when Barrowman’s children were added as beneficiaries.
The whole cycle stinks as it reveals its tawdry mechanics. A peer refers a company to ministers… a firm hastily awarded monumental contracts from the VIP lane… equipment not fit for purpose… taxpayers rinsed for huge sums… then chunks funnelled privately overseas.
This is not merely individual snoutage but systemic skimming – it speaks to deeper decay when elites treat public procurement as a piggy bank to hammer at will. Most offensive is how Mone still grunts she has done nothing wrong despite her snargling snout marks all over this distasteful episode.
The Establishment Embraces Deceit As Its Prerogative
And here we come to the rotten core of Britain’s establishment – an engrained sense of entitlement to deceive, evade and enrich oneself no matter how it erodes trust in institutions. Mone admits she lied to the media yet squeaks this is not illegal, as though legality is the barometer of virtue when she has wallowed in the trough courtesy of taxpayers she misled and disregarded.
How many times have we seen this swaggering hubris as politicians grant themselves immunity from the standards they impose on others? Privilege is abused in spirit yet no technicality breach surfaces for condemnation. So the cynical impression lingers – one rule for an aloof, out of touch elite and another for the little people.
Until Westminster shows it understands public service as a solemn duty – not a career ladder for personal plunder – then this profiteering rot will continue chewing through the pillars of governance. And the Mones of this world will go on smearing their snouts with impunity knowing a slap on the trotters is the severest consequence. People see through this cycle as it erodes the last residues of respect in Britain’s democracy.